The Balvenie 17yo Madeira Cask

The Balvenie 17yo Madeira Cask

The Balvenie is a Speyside style single malt Scotch whisky that is distilled in Duffstown, Scotland. Single malt meaning that the malted barley that the distillery uses is exclusive to that distillery only; and it not shared with other facilities. It spends most of its 17 years aging in traditional American oak casks, before it is then transferred into casks that were used to fortify Madeira wine.

Color:  The Scotch has picked up a beautiful golden straw color from its extended time aging in oak casks.

Nose: Right away I get a scent that reminds me of fresh orange peel. After that you get a bouquet of vanilla and spice.

Mouth feel: A typical mouth feel for scotches from the Speyside region; heavier than an Irish whiskey and lighter than a bourbon. Flows very nicely around your mouth and goes down very, very smooth.

Palate: The nose of this spirit tells you exactly what to expect when this hits your tongue. First you lured in by a sweetly smooth vanilla flavor before getting hit a flood of holiday spice flavors. Flavors of cinnamon, nutmeg and dates awaken your palate before turning into a wonderful oaky notes.

Finish: A very tragically short lived finish of dry oak that reminds you of a morning after a campfire in late summer/early fall.

I got this bottle back in November of 2011 as a wedding gift from one of my best men (yes one of, I had two best men). What can I say, other than this is probably one of the best gifts I have ever received. It has a lot of notes and flavors that I love and I will forever associate it with the best day of my life. Every time I take in the nose before that first sip; I immediately get visions of the changing leaves of fall and the smell of early autumn smell of musky wood. My only complaint is that the finish is nowhere near long enough, I find myself going back for more, not for the upfront flavors, but for that dry toasted oak. Oh well, just a good a reason as any to keep drinking 😉